This book had its ups and downs for me. The plot and the paranormal elements were really good and I enjoyed the actual story immensely. The author's writing however, was pretty shoddy at times and it was hard to overlook some of the poor construction.
For example, there was one character, "Sexy Sarah," that we were introduced to at the beginning but her story was completely forgotten about and never wrapped up.
And speaking of "Sexy Sarah," that wasn't the only cheezy name we were forced to endure. "City Boy" and "Country Boy" wers used more times then I even want to count.
Also, in one chapter, two of the characters, Harmon and Logan, were having a conversation and in every sentence the author restated the characters names i.e. How are you Logan? I'm doing good Harmon. Logan, have you looked at those papers? No, Harmon I've been busy with Sexy Sally...
It just went on and on and on. I'm not a professional writer or anything but to me, if it's crystal clear that two characters are conversing with each other, there is no need to repeat their names over and over again, in every single sentence.
So there were some pretty big bumps and pot-holes plot-holes along Tobacco Road, but if the author would hire a good editor, this could be a 5 star story.
*Buddy Read with Marie : )
The few books I've read by Cross haven't been "sleep with the lights on scary" but she can write a creepy, atmospheric ghost story that reels you in from page one and doesn't let up until the end. I had originally planned on rating this 5 stars but after pondering over the couple of issues I had with it, I felt like 4 stars was more appropriate.
The first thing that bothered me was: we were given the impression that Paula is a child, maybe very young teenager, still enrolled in school, yet the language she used (gd-d&mn this & gd that) and the way that she talked to her dad and acted wasn't very reflective of a young child. Then she was sleeping at home by herself and hanging out all night long with the snowplow guy who was a lot older and out of school already. So there was a definite age conflict going on.
Then we come to Jonah... Jonah supposedly had multiple brain surgeries over a period of 20+ years and had over 1/3 of his brain moved, yet his memory and ability to walk, talk and speak was not effected. That didn't come across as very believable to me.
Plus in Chapter 21,
one of the sisters, Elizabeth, shoots Jonah. The author writes- "Elizabeth fired, blasting a hole in the man's chest and sending him thudding back down into the muddy ground."
Then in Chapter 23,
the author writes- "Screaming, Elizabeth dropped the still smoking rifle as she fell to her knees. She put her hands over her face, as if to hide from the horrific sight of the dead man in front of her, whose head and neck had been blasted away. As Elizabeth continued to sob, Sara watched from a little further back. There was blood all over her, along with pieces of bone and brain matter that had been sprayed across her when the man had been shot."
Then toward the end we find out
Jonah is alive and well. The author tells us he was shot in the shoulder and he's out and about, talking, walking and starting fires like he didn't just die several chapters ago. So what is he- dead, alive, shot in the shoulder, shot in the chest or shot in the head?? According to the author, he's all of the above,
which I think is a huge plot hole that needs reworked.
If you can overlook those details it is a very entertaining ghost story and I had a lot of fun reading it as a buddy read with my GR friend Marie. : )
After I fell in love with The Haunting of Maddy Clare several years ago, I read all of St. James books. I just love her stories and I was really excited and so looking forward to this!
Which is why it really pains me to say The Broken Girls just didn't do very much for me. Maybe my expectations were just too high, but it really felt like the plot, the suspense and the paranormal/haunting aspect, were all toned down; very mild and mediocre in comparison to her other books.
I'll always be a fan but I hope she ups the ante with her next book.